Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Livin' the dream

Summer, like your child’s infancy, has the uncanny ability to go by too quickly and too slowly at the same time.  Long lazy days of swimming and building a mini golf course in your yard and agonizing over deadlines all blend into one another and then, bam- the peas have gone by, when you barely even noticed they were ready.


That’s not entirely true.  I knew they were starting to be ready, but I was very carefully choosing only the juiciest, most rotund and ready of the bunch, as my dear husband has a little… thing about the proper time to pick snap peas.  But then I turned around and the plants were drying out, the peas ready to burst with sweet plumpness. 
This seems to happen a lot in my life. I spend so much time planting seeds (metaphorically and literally) and then tending, acticipating, and eventually kind of… forgetting?  I don’t know why.  Maybe all my dreaming and expectation has built whatever I’m waiting for up to such a degree that reality can’t possibly live up to my imagination, so I accidentally-on-purpose allow things slip my mind. 
Or maybe I’m just really lazy.
But not this year.
This year, I am determined not to miss anything.  I did too much of that last year, during the summer of long-handled shoe horns, anti-coagulants, and endless physical therapy.  So I marched myself, both kids, and the dog down to the garden and got a-pickin’. 

One kid did more bike riding than picking.

And the other kid did more feeding the dog than picking. 

But it was nice to have company.  You know, aside from the bugs in my tea.  

It's far from the idyllic scene of cooperative family farming I have in my head. But I'm starting to accept "good enough" family farming - everyone together, outside, and committed to the task at hand. When I am able to give up a tiny bit of control over what everyone else's chosen task is, things tend to go more smoothly.  And even if people whine and complain, and call each other names, and the dog runs away and I am crushed under the weight of having to do all this goddamned work all by myself, there will always be the reward of the harvest.  And the pretty pictures it inspires.